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La Salle News

July 21, 2020

What to know about face coverings on La Salle’s campus

La Salle branded mask worn on student face

Working together will ensure a safe return to campus for all members of the La Salle University community. Wearing a face covering is a critically important part of this process.

#ExplorersReturn, the University’s return-to-campus plan, outlines how, where, and when to wear a face covering. The guidelines call for all University students, faculty, staff, and visitors to wear a cloth face mask when traveling across campus, and while in public spaces, inside a building, on public transportation, or whenever around others.  

Face coverings should be worn even if you are practicing physical distancing.

As outlined by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the novel coronavirus disease called COVID-19 is spread most frequently through respiratory droplets. Therefore, wearing a cloth face mask is critical in helping to stop the spread of the disease. By wearing a face mask, you are not only protecting yourself, but, more importantly, your fellow Explorers.

It is a simple step that can prevent you from unknowingly spreading the virus to others, even when you are symptom-free.  Here’s what you need to know:

How to secure a face covering properly

Wash your hands before putting on your face covering. Then, place the face covering over your nose and mouth while securing it under your chin. Try to fit it snugly against the sides of your face, and always make sure you can breathe easily. 

Where to get a face mask

By now, given recent City of Philadelphia and Commonwealth of Pennsylvania mandates, everyone should have a face covering. La Salle University will provide one washable cloth mask to all students, faculty, and staff at or before Aug. 17—the start of the Fall 2020 semester. Faculty and front-line staff will be provided a small supply of disposable masks to give to students or guests that enter a classroom or office without a mask. The Outpost, La Salle’s campus bookstore, also will carry reusable face masks for purchase.

You may wear you own clean, well-maintained face mask, provided it covers both your nose and your mouth. It is also recommended that you carry at least two clean face masks with you daily. This will ensure that you have a replacement in case your mask becomes unusable during the day. (Face masks with an external valve or vent are not acceptable.)

Wearing a face covering indoors

It’s simple: Face masks should always be worn in indoor settings on campus. This includes classrooms and laboratories; common spaces in residence halls and apartment living, like hallways, building entranceways and exits, and shared restrooms; dining halls; and all other University buildings including offices and the library.  

The only exception to this rule is when you are eating and drinking or when you are in your individual living area.

In some classroom and laboratory settings, instructors may request to use a face shield instead of a face mask. The CDC has issued guidelines on the effectiveness of face shields to protect the individual wearing it from the spray of respiratory particles.

Guidance on outdoor wear

If you are holding a meeting or a study group in an outdoor setting, or just talking with friends and colleagues among the cherry blossoms, please note that face masks must be worn while outside when you are less than six feet apart from people from different households.

And a face mask must be worn while traveling across campus or exercising outside on or near campus, as physical distancing cannot be guaranteed at these times.

Off-campus guidance

For students living off campus, it is particularly important to wear a face covering whenever you leave your home. Wearing one is one of the simplest measures you can take to protect and respect our neighbors and the community in which you are living.

For more guidance, those living in off-campus housing can refer to the City of Philadelphia and Commonwealth of Pennsylvania guidelines on face masks.

See something? Say something

Everyone in the University community must work together in order for a safe return to campus. Not only will individuals not wearing face masks be denied entrance to spaces on campus, or asked to leave, they also compromise the health and wellness of the University’s employees, students, and residents.

Use the mylasalle Portal to report an incident of a student not abiding by these guidelines, and contact hr@lasalle.edu to report an incident of an employee not adhering to these guidelines.

Additional questions and comments can be submitted through a feedback form on La Salle University’s COVID-19 page. 

—Patrick Berkery